Photo of Penne with Vodka Sauce by WW

Penne with Vodka Sauce

Points® value
Total Time
28 min
10 min
18 min
Yes, there's actual cream and vodka in our lightened up version of this Italian specialty—just enough for fantastic flavour without all of the calories and fat.


Unsalted butter

1 tbsp(s)


2 medium, minced (about 1/2 cup)


2 clove(s), large, minced

Fresh parsley

2 tbsp(s), fresh, minced

Sea salt

tsp(s), or other coarse salt

Black pepper

¼ pinch(es), freshly ground

Canned tomato paste

3 tbsp(s)


2 fl oz

Table salt

tsp(s), or to taste (for cooking pasta)

Uncooked penne

12 oz

Heavy whipping cream

½ cup(s)

Fresh basil

20 tbsp(s), fresh, cut into ribbons (chiffonade)


  1. Heat a large skillet over a medium-low heat. Add butter, shallots and garlic; sauté until shallots start to caramelise, about 3 to 5 minutes. Add parsley, sea salt and pepper, stirring once or twice. Add tomato paste and mix to form a paste. Cook for about 5 minutes, moving paste around pan occasionally; add vodka. Scrap bottom of pan with a wooden spoon and cook for about 5 minutes more.
  2. Meanwhile, bring a medium pot of salted water to a boil. Cook pasta according to package directions; drain.
  3. Add cream to tomato sauce; reduce heat to low and simmer for about 3 minutes. Add pasta to sauce and mix to coat; top with basil and season to taste with salt and pepper.
  4. Yields about 1 cup per serving.


Serve immediately when the sauce is at its creamiest. If you prefer a looser sauce, add some pasta-cooking water to the sauce.